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Full text of "Alexander von Humboldt"

LIFE   OF
he writes to his friend Babel these few words, which
will express the deep grief he felt: "She wus <lying;
opened her eyes and said to her husband, 'Another
human being is ended/ She expected her death, but
in vain; she lived again, and took an interest in what
was going on around her. She prayed much/". ....
In this condition she lay until the 26th of March,
1829., on which day it was announced in Berlin., uudor
universal mourning, that death had released her from
her sufferings. Her early death was an unfortunate
event, for her travels had brought her into intimate
relation with all the celebrities in science and art; her
house had always been the centre of the most agree-
able and intelligent society in Rome, Vienna,, Paris,
and Berlin. We can imagine what Alexander must
have suffered, when we know his brother's grief. Both
brothers, so intimately and affectionately united, in
life and in study, always shared joy arid grief with
each other. William's love for his wife had increased
each year, and her death again revived, and heightened
that sentimental devotion, which had been in his
youth a feature of his character. The thought of his
wife seemed to him an intercourse with a higher world;
her image was never absent from, his soul; it entered
into all his thoughts, and ennobled his own existence.
Alexander von Humbolclt remained for some time
with his brother, and we may assume that tlio de-
parted one was often present to his mind, for she wa&
the nearest female friend he had related to him by
blood and affection; as he had never known the ties
of conjugal tenderness, his heart coitld only have boon
occupied with the delightful picture of his brother's
matrimonial happiness. After the death of Jus wife,
William was almost exclusively occupied with the
plan of a monument for the departed one, whose) re-
mains rested, until its completion, in a spot of the
church-yard of Tegel chosen by herself.*
* This monument was executed by the sculptor Rauch, ami erected
in the park of the mansion. An alley of cypresses leads to it; and,
on the top of the monument is placed a marble stutiie of Spos, ex-
pressly made for Madame von Humboldt, by Tlaorwaldsoa.